Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Urgent vs. Important

When I was in pharmacy school, one of my professors taught us something very important, and it had absolutely nothing to do with medications. He taught us the difference between something being urgent and something being important. He used the illustration of having a meeting with one of us (his students) when the phone in office rang. The phone is urgent, but the meeting with the student is important. I graduated from pharmacy school over ten years ago, and honestly, I don't remember a lot of what I was taught (because it wasn't important!), but I remember this lesson.

As a mother, I need to be able to discern between urgency and importance. There are a lot of things that are urgent, like the phone (the ringing, the ringing -- make it stop!). There are more things that are important, like being available for my children. Sometimes, I have to make the conscious decision to let the phone ring because I'm doing something more important like preparing supper. Sometimes, I have to ignore Rachel's screams (she screams when she's happy) to go check on the older two who are being quiet. Sometimes, I need to let the buzzer on the washing machine beep (and beep and beep...) while I finish reading a story to my children. Urgent things demand my attention, but the important ones need it.

What urgent things do you let go in order to focus on the important ones?


Tracey said...

I'm with you on the phone. If it rings while eating supper, reading bedtime books to my children, etc., I have learned to ignore it for that period of time. Another case of assessing priorities and, in that moment, doing what's truly important.

Have a nice day!

crazymotheringchick said...

Great post. I always say, just because the phone is ringing, doesn't mean I have to pick it up.

Nikki said...

Ladies, I'm glad to hear that I'm not the only one who ignores the phone when it rings!